The '''American Society of Naturalists''' was founded in 1883 and is one of the oldest professional societies dedicated to the biological sciences in North America. The purpose of the Society is "to advance and diffuse knowledge of organic evolution and other broad biological principles so as to enhance the conceptual unification of the biological sciences."
Founded in Massachusetts with Alpheus Spring Packard Jr.
as its first president, it was called the '''Society of Naturalists of the Eastern United States''' until 1886.
The society publishes the scientific journal, ''The American Naturalist
'', and holds an annual meeting with a scientific program of symposia and contributed papers and posters. It also confers a number of awards for achievement in evolutionary biology and/or ecology, including the Sewall Wright Award
(named in honor of Sewall Wright
) for senior researchers making "fundamental contributions ... to the conceptual unification...